Address Verification Service AVS Assess risk and prevent fraud at lighting speed

Address Verification Service (AVS): Assess risk and prevent fraud at lighting speed



No matter the industry, any business that spends time mitigating fraud attempts has encountered an address verification service/system (AVS). An AVS is an important piece of the puzzle and a widely used tool when it comes to reducing fraud, especially for card-not-present transactions. Below we will outline how an address verification service works, why an AVS check is necessary for preventing and detecting fraud, who could benefit from an AVS and, finally, the benefits of using our best-in-class address verification service, our Address Risk API.

How does address verification service check work?

An address that can’t be tied to a genuine consumer can cause businesses to incur high costs due to fraud, order reprocessing, customer care hours, customer loyalty and more. In short, an address risk assessment prevents fraudulent transactions on credit cards used by both individuals and by businesses. Ultimately, address verification checks validate whether the individual placing the order or making the transaction is the same as the cardholder. An address verification service checks to ensure that the address and zip code associated with a customer match against those kept on record by the company/institution the customer is doing business with. This prevents unauthorized users from making purchases.

Furthermore, an address verification service can also be used to check for address inaccuracies. Whether it be a typo made during input, or a customer has moved addresses entirely, inaccurate customer address data does not always indicate fraud. However, address data that is incomplete or formatted incorrectly can cost your business a lot of money and waste resources you do not have.

Why is address verification an important step to prevent fraud?

An address verification service solution validates customer addresses by checking for inconsistencies and fixing problems to ensure customer data is clean and accurate. This helps keep both your business and your customers safe. This not only ensures that packages and mail reach their intended destination but also prevents a fraudster, with access to stolen credit cards, accessing accounts and sites and causing havoc.

What are some industries that could benefit from address verification service solutions?

Online Retailers

Ecommerce merchants need to be sure that the products, as well as the marketing materials, will arrive at the correct address. No matter where online retailers are shipping, an address verification service ensures that the package arrives on time – whether three blocks away or overseas. In this ever-competitive ecommerce market, the last thing a merchant needs are lost or undelivered packages! The shipping fees alone, alongside the customer service hours, are too costly and time-consuming.

Financial service institutions

Address verification service tools enable financial institutions to lower identity verification costs by quickly putting a stop to bad actors inputting fraudulent addresses. Indeed, by eliminating these fraudsters early in the account opening process, more time and resources can be spent on supporting legitimate customers. Furthermore, a real-time address risk evaluation enables adherence and compliance to anti-money laundering laws (AML) and know-your-customer (KYC) protocols by financial institutions that must adhere to them.

Service providers

Service providers need to be sure addresses are verified and accurate to be sure they can arrive on time. With the right address verification service, service providers can rest easy knowing a customer’s location is legitimate.

How our global address verification service, Address Risk API helps businesses

For fraud teams across verticals, Address Risk API is designed to provide rich metadata and risk signals around any given address and help you predict whether your customer is engaging in fraudulent activity.

Two sides to any address

Using authoritative data and linkages from the Identity Graph and transaction-level intelligence from the Identity Network, our data helps you holistically perform a real-time risk assessment on any address that is provided by your customer.

The Address Risk API solution confirms the validity of an address, how it is being used across transactions within our network and metadata associated with the address that can be used across various use cases. This rich address data helps you identify both high and low-risk addresses so you can easily identify fake locations or low-risk areas.

Address risk assessment data that moves the needle

Features in the Address Risk API:

  • Unique identifiers– A durable ID that can be used to calculate risk and prevent promotion abuse
  • Parsed and normalized addresses– Resolve addresses into a consistent format
  • Validity checks– Verification that an address is valid
  • Geo coordinates– Location coordinates that can be used for distance calculations or to check to see if an address falls in geographical risk “zones”
  • Network signals– Predictive patterns around how often an address is used, how many businesses the address has been used at, how many other elements have been used with that address and when the address was first or last seen in the Identity Network

In addition, our Address Risk API is built around some of our core data pillars: global coverage and low latency to provide you a robust and scalable address verification service and real-time risk assessment to meet your needs.


Having a clean, up-to-date address database is critically important for any business. Not only does on-time and accurate delivery save time and money, but it also ensures customer satisfaction and loyalty.

We continue to innovate and build new products to support your identity and digital interaction needs. With our Address Risk API, we provide critical data points for any global location to help you identify good and bad addresses encountered within your customer workflows so you can reduce fraud costs and generate more revenue.


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